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Lightbourne helps Belmont do the double

All-rounder Lightbourne played his part in Belmont’s big win

As a teenager, Kyle Lightbourne made headlines when, as a quick bowler, he dismissed Michael Atherton, a future England cricket captain, but it was on the football pitch that he found fame.

Yet, at 46, Lightbourne can still bowl tidy medium pace and on Saturday his all-round performance earned him the man-of-the-match award after helping Belmont to clinch the Evening Cricket League’s Premier Division league and knockout double for the second season running at Shelly Bay Field.

Opener Lightbourne made top score of 37 and then took the first wicket as Belmont again beat The Associates, who were handicapped by injuries to two players.

The margin of victory in last season’s knockout final was four runs. This time it was 13 as The Associates paid a heavy price for delivering 11 wides and six no-balls compared with their opponents’ one wide.

Lightbourne hit two fours and a six as he and Adam Petty, who made 22, put on 41 for the first wicket, but The Associates restricted Belmont to 116 for seven, despite the extras, on a ground with big boundaries and a slow outfield.

Mike Penrose claimed three for 14 from two overs and Dave Horan two for ten from five, the maximum permitted under the league’s rules.

In reply, The Associates ran into immediate trouble as Penrose was caught down the leg side off Lightbourne, whose much faster fellow left-arm new-ball partner, 45-year-old Traddie Simpson, then left the innings in tatters at ten for four with a three-wicket burst, including the key dismissal of Steve Drake for five.

Lightbourne, a former Stoke City striker, took one for nine from four overs, while Simpson finished with three for 17 from five.

The Associates lost a fifth wicket at 24, but Travis Stringer, who made 33, and Justin Freisenbruch, who made 20, led a spirited fightback, leaving their side 17 to win from the final over.

But, with Guyle Pietersz unable to bat through injury, the target was beyond them, The Associates being dismissed for 103 with two balls remaining.

Belmont’s other wicket-takers were Mark Ray with three for 35 off 4.4 overs and Troy Bean, who took two for 38 from five.

Vivian Sailsman, Belmont’s captain, praised his team’s bowling, especially Simpson, who is widely regarded as the league’s best bowler. “Traddie looked first-class,” he said.

Damion Henderson, The Associates’ captain, conceded Belmont were the better team but rued the number of extras his side conceded.

“Belmont’s bowling in the first ten overs was exceptionally good,” he said.

“That we got past 100 was great credit to the middle order and the team spirit of the squad.

“We bowled and fielded well, and exerted pressure on the Belmont batsmen such that they never got away from us.

“We did give away too many wides and no-balls that in the end was the difference between the two teams. Belmont hardly bowled a loose delivery.

“All credit to Belmont. The game was played in the right spirit. We will be back to try again next year.”

Bailey’s Bay, who will be promoted to the Premier Division next season, also completed the double when they beat Deloitte by 46 runs to win the Second Division final, thanks to all-rounder Jermaine Outerbridge’s half-century and two-wicket haul.

In the opener, Outerbridge, the man of the match, struck 64 in Bailey’s Bay 127 for seven and then took two for 12 from three overs as Deloitte were bowled out for 81 in 16 overs, Rick Louw making 30. Irvin Burgess, who took two for two in one over, and Devonne Simmons, with two for six from three, were Bay’s other successful bowlers.